After flying back to Seattle, I left our heavenly spot in Gig Harbor and headed over to the WIN gathering at the Quinault Casino in Ocean Shores, WA. We parked right along the beach. It's too bad the weather wasn't good most days, but we still had a great spot. This is the view looking towards the ocean on a good weather day.
Looking out my back bathroom window, I can see the water! And almost for free! (It's free to stay here during the week, and just $5 a night on Friday and Saturday nights.)
You can drive on the beach here, but weekends can be pretty crowded.
It might be better to go on horseback.
Gulls are everywhere -
Picking up the remains from what the tide brings in.
A couple years ago there was a big tsunami in Japan and tsunami debris has been floating in here off and on ever since.
On the way to our next spot, we stopped in the neat town of Raymond.
Lots of rusty stuff here, including these street cleaners.
Shamelessly Cheesy Grandkid Pictures, that is. Here's the professional picture of all four generations that my son did with his new lighting equipment and fancy camera.
Asha is a real Daddy's girl and can't take her eyes off him.
Mark's an excellent cook, and I'm totally clueless as to how that happened.
One day Corrie, Mara, Jonathan and I went to Luray Caverns.
They give you a nice tour, with lots of great views of the stalactites and stalagmites.
It was a shame that a lot of them were broken off if you looked closely. Since the cave was discovered way back in 1878, I guess there has been much opportunity for damage.
At the end of the tour, you get to see and hear the Great Stalacpipe Organ, built in 1957.
It was made by finding stalactites and stalagmites that produced a certain note, and attaching a whatchamacallit to each one. (I guess I wasn't really paying attention...)
Mara, Jonathan, and Corrie, the best posers ever!
Right outside the caverns is the Rope Adventure Park, in case your kids aren't tired out yet. Jonathan -
And Mara really enjoyed it.
On another day, we took a little trip over to Great Falls of the Potomac.
A photo of the falls with 3 pictures stitched together.
All good things must come to an end, and eventually, I drove back to my father's house in Pennsylvania and flew back to Seattle from there. Taking off from the Harrisburg airport, you always get a good view of Three Mile Island, famous for being the site of the worst accident in U.S. commercial nuclear power plant history, back in 1979.
I really enjoy looking out the window when flying and seeing if I can figure out where I am. I did recognize several things, and when we got back to western Washington, saw a couple big wildfires.
Flying out of Seattle, I got a great view of Lake Washington and the area around the city. And a little further east, we flew right by -
I changed planes in Chicago, heading further East. What would make me do such a crazy thing??? You know I like to stay in the West.
Ah hah! Baby Asha was calling to me to come visit.
And as an added bonus, my other 2 grandchildren, Mara and Jonathan, were visiting at the same time. Since they live on the other side of the US, I probably won't get to see them all together too often.
Of course, my daughter, Dr. Corrie, was there too. Mark and Carisa really enjoyed having their own personal pediatrician.
One day, they drove up to visit with Pop-Pop, my 93-year old father in Pennsylvania. The kids really liked his Triumph Spitfire - thought it was just the right size for them.
And they got to play on the neighbor's equipment too.
We all went to Hershey Chocolate World for the day.
My very favorite candy! Originally a separate company, Reese merged with Hershey back in 1963.
There is a free Great American Chocolate Tour ride that shows how chocolate is made. You even get free smells along the way, probably so you'll get hungry and buy stuff later...
We went on it a couple times, because they give you one of their products at the end. Enjoy the free tour, because everything else there is VERY expensive!
For lunch, Corrie and Mara had chocolate barbeque chicken pizza. Yum!
After lunch, the kids and Corrie made their own candy bar.
And then there was just enough time to hit the gift shop before heading home.